British motorists are concerned other drivers may be out of practice when they return to the road as lockdown restrictions are eased. A study of more than 2,000 UK drivers found three-quarters were concerned that some drivers may be a little rusty after the coronavirus lockdown limited mileage for many.

According to the survey by price comparison site, 58 percent of drivers have used their car less between January and April 2021 as the UK was locked down. However, 42 percent say they are now driving more since the restrictions were lifted.

Perhaps with that in mind, more than a third of the motorists quizzed (36 percent) said they were concerned their own driving abilities may have deteriorated through lack of practice. But drivers were even more concerned about the skills of others, with 75 percent fearing other drivers may be rusty.

Traffic jam

Younger drivers are the most likely to worry about returning to the road, with more than half (55 percent) of under 25s feeling nervous about their ability to drive safely again. And youngsters are most likely to worry about the capabilities of other drivers, with 84 percent expressing concern.

Worryingly, almost a third (31 percent) of motorists are also worried about the safety of their cars, with 16 percent admitting they have not checked any aspect of their cars during the most recent lockdown. Only 39 percent of drivers checked their brakes, and just 36 percent checked the battery. The most commonly checked item was tyres, monitored by 62 percent of respondents.

Auto mechanic checking tyre pressure

Dan Hutson, the head of motor insurance at said drivers concerned about their abilities should consider taking lessons before driving again. He also urged all drivers to check their cars over before getting back on the road.

“Millions of motorists may be feeling a bit rusty after not driving as frequently while travel restrictions were in place," said Hutson. "However, it seems concern is directed towards other drivers rather than people nervous about the quality of their own driving. Our research shows experienced drivers may be feeling fine to get behind the wheel again, but many young motorists are concerned their abilities may not be up to scratch.

“Any out-of-practice drivers might think about getting refresher lessons before driving again more regularly. It’s also really important for all motorists to check their car before driving if they haven’t used it for a while – this includes checking the tyres, brakes and fluid levels, as well as ensuring that insurance and tax are up to date.”